What brake fluid to choose

The principle of operation of the vehicle’s brake system is based on displacement from the working volume of a special fluid that acts on the caliper piston and closes the pads. For effective interaction in the brakes of modern cars a special thick fluid called brake fluid is used. The compositions can differ greatly, but because the task of the motorist is choose the right model in accordance with regulatory manufacturer’s recommendations.

Which brake fluid to choose


We recommend reading an article from an expert on choosing brake pads and secrets of choosing brake discs.

Top brake fluid manufacturers

Given that brake fluid is a multi-component a composition that has a complex chemical formula, its release is The prerogative of world-famous chemical concerns:

  1. Mannol;

  2. Liqui Moly;

  3. Castrol;

  4. Shell

  5. Fuchs;

  6. Mobil

  7. Castrol;

  8. Bosh;

Before giving preference in favor of the manufacturer any other product, you need to familiarize yourself with the tolerances manufacturers of specific brands of cars, as well as with specific reviews users who have operated a particular composition for time required.

Types of brake fluid

Products on the market may vary significantly. chemical composition, and therefore it is customary to divide it into the following kinds:



Mineral-based compounds designed for slow-moving operation. Provide acceptable braking functionality on low-power civil vehicles equipped with disc or drum brakes.


  • The cheapest formulations on the market;

  • Stable viscosity index under thermal loads;

  • It is widespread;

  • They are used for a wide range of domestic and foreign production;


  • High hygroscopicity;

  • Not able to provide the necessary braking performance in more or less powerful cars;



More advanced brake fluid used on modern cars with power up to 150-170 horsepower, equipped exclusively with disc brakes. Not bad cope with dynamic loads and withstand extremes temperatures. Recommended for modern domestic cars, as well as foreign cars.


  • Constant viscosity index;

  • Low specific hygroscopicity;

  • Long term of operation;

  • Widely used for various systems equipped with disk brakes;


  • Costs more than DOT3;

  • When the maximum load is exceeded, it ceases to perform the functions assigned to it;

Dot 5.1

DOT 5.1

Modern formulations designed for use in powerful sports cars equipped with braking systems multi-piston calipers and experience serious mechanical and temperature loads. Able to withstand significant overload without changing the chemical composition and density. Have zero hygroscopicity and a long time do not require replacement.


  • Designed for harsh operating conditions;

  • Zero hygroscopicity;

  • Suitable for powerful cars;

  • Do not change the viscosity index;


  • The highest cost among all on the market compositions;

Brake fluid selection options

In addition to matching one class or another, brake fluid must have a set of specific characteristics that indicate serviceability.

  1. Boiling point of brake fluid. Parameter, reflecting the temperature at which the composition ceases to perform the functions assigned to it. Dry temperature is emitted, corresponding to the new fluid, and “wet”, characterizing the former used liquid that has absorbed a certain percentage of water (usually 3-3.5 percent);

  2. Kinematic viscosity. Parameter reflecting ability the passage of fluid through the tubes at a particular temperature. Quality compounds should avoid the ability to overuse thickening at temperatures down to -40 degrees and at the same time Do not be too fluid when heated to + 40-50 degrees;

  3. The presence of enzymes that protect rubber products from destruction, and metals from corrosion. Play the most important role in safety braking system, preventing destruction brake hoses and metal seals;

  4. Lubricity. Parameter that affects brake performance in general and design calipers in particular. It is thanks to the ability to lubricate rubbing couples carried out high-quality and long-term operation of the brake system of the car.


In the next article we tell how to choose the right cast wheels for the car.

Attention! This material is subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a buying guide.

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